Uttara Saud, 14, sits inside a Chaupadi shed in the hills of Legudsen village in Achham District in western Nepal February 16, 2014
Although the ancient Hindu practice has been prohibited since 2005, a 15-year-old girl in Nepal was exiled to a shed, while they menstruate. On Monday, police confirmed that she died.
“We are investigating the case. We suspect that they died of suffocation in the smoke of a fire they lighted to keep themselves warm,” local district inspector, Badri Prasad Dhakal told AFP.
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The practice, known as chhaupadi prohibits women from involvement in normal activities during menstruation and after childbirth, and of the interaction with the men of the household, AFP reported. Although chhaupadi was outlawed, local leaders are lax about the implementation of the rule, AFP reported.
In a similar case In November, a 26-year-old woman in western Nepal died in a menstrual hut, which led the country’s prime minister to call upon her ward, to find out what happened, NPR reported. The local police asked the woman, Dambara Upadhyay, may have died of a heart attack, but the first report could not determine her cause of death.
The name of the teenager was not released.
“It is crucial for us to work to change the attitude of the people and raise awareness against this practice,” Mohna Ansari of Nepal the National Human Rights Commission, told AFP.